Remember LYCOS? Before Google came along it was one of the leaders in the search engine market. It's since tried to reinvent itself as a digital portal in the style of Yahoo or MSN but, be honest, when was the last time you visited its site?
The company is now making a renewed bid for attention with its entry into the wearables market. On June 8 the company is launching a range of devices that will it says, "serve as a single point of entry into users' digital lives".
There will be two products initially, a wristband called Life Band that includes a fitness monitor and personal security manager, and more intriguing a Life Ring that puts a security manager and Tap to Transfer feature on your finger.
"The most valuable commodity in life is time and this technology helps LYCOS Life users maximise their time by making smarter and more informed decisions using the data they receive from LYCOS Life," says Brad Cohen, president and chief strategy officer of LYCOS.
LYCOS Life will intelligently sense individuals' everyday patterns and transfer this information securely and wirelessly to a smartphone via Bluetooth and its Tap to Transfer (T2T) communication protocol. The wearable devices will allow users to automatically monitor their activity, sleep, heart rate, incoming calls, and important notifications from their phone completely hands-free.
The company says that LYCOS Life will soon be able to uniquely identify its wearer by using onboard sensors to recognise its user simply by the way they move. It has developed software that can learn who you are, what you prefer, and what you do based on your own patterns and behaviours.
Features of the Life range include a Personal Security Manager that securely and seamlessly logs in to favourite apps and websites on a phone, unlocking them without the use of passwords. T2T capability lets users securely give a new friend their number, clients a business card, or instantly share an address to launch directions to a restaurant. The LYCOS Life activity tracker allows users to monitor steps, calories burned, speed and heart rate.
There doesn't seem to be anything especially innovative in any of these functions, though the ring idea looks attractive from a convenience point of view.
The wristband will cost $124.99 and the ring $59.99 more information will be available on the LYCOS Life website from Monday.